Wednesday, May 16, 2007 | Yesterday the San Diego City Council voted in favor of the Centerpointe at Grantville mixed-use development.

The Grantville Action Group, a coalition of Allied Gardens and Grantville residents and business owners, as well as other San Diegans fighting redevelopment abuse, had opposed this project based on two factors. First is the unmitigated traffic impact of high-density housing in Grantville. The second is the Redevelopment Agency collecting property tax increment from this project, even though Centerpointe has proceeded separately from the Grantville redevelopment project. As has been previously discussed, tax increment financing has some negative financial ramifications for city’s general fund and for the city’s ability to provide necessary services.

There is, however, a silver lining to all of this.

The fact that the Centerpointe project has succeeded without the assistance of the Redevelopment Agency is in itself proof that Grantville is not blighted and should not be a redevelopment project area. One of the reasons for declaring a community a redevelopment project area is the determination that the economic conditions there are so bad that the free market cannot improve the situation. Only the government and its authority to use eminent domain could ever affect the recovery of such a blighted community. Centerpointe is proof that Grantville is not such a place.

Furthermore, the Centerpointe development will provide funds to help to relieve traffic congestion in the Grantville area. Redevelopment proponents claim that only redevelopment and tax increment can provide infrastructure improvements. Centerpointe suggests otherwise.

In the end, Centerpointe at Grantville is further proof that business and property owners need not be threatened with eminent domain to further progress, and that Grantville should not be a redevelopment project area.

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